The Country Music Association, which announced just two weeks ago that its 2005 awards show will be held in New York's Madison Square Garden, confirmed this week that its 2006 CMA telecast will originate from Baghdad, Iraq.
Kix Brooks, president of the CMA's board of directors and half of the popular duo Brooks and Dunn, made the surprise announcement with Baghdad Mayor Alaa Al-Tamimi. For security reasons, Brooks had flown in under cover of darkness in an unmarked plane. "They told me it was just like when Bush flew in here at Thanksgiving to carry around that prop turkey," he said.
Brooks, clad in a bulletproof vest and wearing an army helmet instead of his usual cowboy hat, appeared alongside the mayor at a news conference in the city's "Green Zone."
"Having the CMAs here will be a way to showcase America's music to the Arab world," he added, flinching slightly at the sound of distant mortar fire. "We know that when Iraqis get a taste of Alan Jackson or Gretchen Wilson, they'll like that better than all that wailing stuff you hear all over the place here. We'll be greeted as musical liberators."
Mayor Al-Tamimi told the war correspondents gathered in the heavily guarded pressroom that he is confident that by November 2006, when the awards show will take place, his city will be safe and secure.
"By then Baghdad will be a peaceful city and the capital of a thriving Arab democracy," he said. "All my friends in the Bush White House say so, and that's good enough for me."
CBS, which broadcasts the highly rated show, is reportedly happy with the agreement.
"We can't wait," said a network source. "It'll be quite a mixturewe'll have a bunch of people in cowboy hats as well as veils and Arab robes in the audience. We just hope Reba McEntire doesn't wear that low-cut gown she did a few years agothat thing could get us in trouble over here."
(The Fabricator is satire. Don't believe everything you read.)
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